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An allostratigraphic approach to a non-marine basin: the north-western part of Cretaceous Kyongsang Basin, SE Korea



The north-western part of the Cretaceous Kyongsang Basin, south-east Korea, comprises alluvial deposits of conglomerate, gravelly sandstone, sandstone and mudstone which can be grouped into four allomembers bounded by stratigraphic discontinuities. The discontinuities trend NW–SE and are marked by distinct facies transitions, abrupt emplacement of conglomerate and thin but persistent mudstone beds. Sedimentary facies and architectural analyses reveal that each allomember formed a depositional system of fluvial channel networks draining toward the south-east with alluvial fans on the northern margin. Each allomember can be characterized by distinctive architecture of channel-fills, clast composition of conglomerate and sandstone/mudstone ratio. Successive units show an eastward shift in the locus of deposition, suggesting basinward relocations of alluvial systems. Such variations with time and space are interpreted to reflect changes in accommodation space and sediment supply during basin evolution, probably caused by fault movements. This study shows that detailed mapping, combined with architectural analysis, and the establishment of alluvial allostratigraphy can help assess changes in alluvial systems and structural development of the basin.